EDITOR'S NOTE - Film Fans runs in the Friday Weekend section of the Gwinnett Daily Post. It features local residents reviewing the film of the week: "Year One." Want to be a Film Fan? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
3 out of 4 stars
The movie "Year One" stars Jack Black as Zed and Michael Cera as Oh, two prehistoric men who were exiled from their village. This is the beginning of their quest to the city of Sodom.
During their quest, they run into different characters from the Book of Genesis.
Black and Cera both hold their own in the scenes. The contrast between their 21st century manners and behavior against the prehistoric times make for lots of laughs. They both deliver their lines with calm and cheer. A throw-back to the Abbott and Costello comedies with some slapstick humor delivered by various guest stars, including David Cross and Paul Rudd making fun of Cain and Abel, or Hank Azaria as Abraham.
These are just some of the guest stars who add to the adventure as the two men wander from era to era and go from loincloths to tunics, from the woods of their village to the temples of Sodom.
This is a silly, goofy comedy. Black and Cera in prehistoric costumes and wigs make this movie hilarious. If you like Jack Black then this is one to see.
- Gail Nuñez-Blackshear, Lawrenceville
2 out of 4 stars
The initial scenes of this movie attempt to create some audience sympathy with the two main characters. Unfortunately, neither set-up worked for me.
Jack Black plays a hunter who can't hunt, and like every character I've ever see him play, he performs in a predictable, one-dimensional style that's just not that funny.
Michael Cera plays a gatherer who can't gather, and he delivers his lines like a comedian on stage: he's funny, but he's a flat character.
The script could have been written by a "Saturday Night Live" writing crew for a "themed" show, because most of the scenes did not have a core theme; they just felt like random sketches thrown together to make a "best of" kind of show. I was expecting the worst, so I wasn't disappointed in the movie, which actually did contain a couple of funny situations.
In the spirit of Hollywood, the Old Testament stories were related with a slant more toward political-correctness than the truth, which I find quite ironic for a "comedy." I would not recommend the movie, but I do give two stars for the outtakes at the end.
- Jenni McKinney, Buford
2 out of 4 stars
To be honest, I did not expect much going into "Year One," but I am a Jack Black fan. His signature style is present throughout the film, although it's not his best work.
If you are a fan, this is worth seeing as a rental. Similarly, those who do not like Jack Black should avoid this film. This movie does not have big laughs, but you will have a few chuckles along the way.
Additionally, there are many cameos for fans of comedies. My favorite was David Cross.
Although there is nothing groundbreaking, the movie provides more than the previews' few laughs. I found it mildly entertaining from start to finish. Save this for a rainy day rental.
- Sean Ahern,